Category Archives: Blessed Virgin Mary

The Assumption (Dormition) of the Blessed Virgin Mary – a period of fast


Dormition of the BVM, french unknown master.jpgAugust 1 through 14 is a period of fasting in the
Byzantine churches in preparation for the feast of the Dormition of the
Theotokos (Assumption) on August 15.  


Unfortunately, we in the Roman Church have lost the Assumption fast, but we continue to bless herbs and flowers on this solemnity.

It is truly right to bless you, O
Theotokos, as the ever-blessed and immaculate Mother of our God. More honorable
than the cherubim, and by far more glorious than the seraphim, ever a virgin, you
gave birth to God the Word; O true Theotokos, we magnify you!

“Dostojno je.”

The Brown Scapular: Mary’s promise

This past
Saturday was the feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, the liturgical
commemoration of Mary on which we automatically thought of the brown
scapular. Or, we did make an association with the BVM of Mount Carmel and the scapular. Our sensibilities have changed dramatically to the point that only the old people remember such devotions by-and-large.

Recently at the parish we were talking about selling rosaries,
bibles, catechisms nun-made fudge, and I introduced offering the brown
scapular. The person who is organizing this  very small “church store” looked at me
quizzically: what are scapulars? So much for Catholic culture and the Catholic
liturgical imagination! I explained that as a concept originally referred to a
form of clothing, a wide band of clothe put on the shoulders reaching down to the front and back of the legs, often to the ankles.  The scapular is worn by priests, nuns, and sisters like, but not limited to
the Dominicans; the scapular historically was worn as an apron that would
protect the tunic. Later the scapular was blessed taking it out of the realm of
a work outfit. But I am not talking about the scapular worn as part of the religious habit of the religious.

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Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Madonna of Mt Carmel Tiepolo.jpg

Hail Mary, full of grace.


The Lord is with you –O serene virgin.


You stand out as the temple


Of the humble and the great, 


Of the lion and the lamb,


Of Christ the
savior–Yet you remain a virgin.


You have been made mother


Of the bud and the
dew,


You are queen of virgins, 

Rose without thorns.

(The text is excerpted from
a longer Sequence for the feast of the Annunciation of the B.V.M.)

Missionary image of Our Lady of Pompeii visits East Haven, CT parish

Missionary image of Our Lady of Pompeii June 6 2011.jpgThe missionary image of Our Lady of Pompeii is making the rounds the various parishes in the USA strengthening the faith of the people and evoking the confidence in Christ. Tonight, the Missionary Image of Our Lady of Pompeii was brought to the parish church named for the same in East Haven, CT. Thanks to Father Matthew R. Mauriello, pastor of Saint Roch Church (Greenwich, CT) and the coordinator of the US Marian Mission of Our Lady of Pompeii.

Father John Lavorgna, pastor of the East Haven parish welcomed the bishop, clergy and the lay faithful. Mass began to strains of “Santa Maria del Camino.” Father John did a terrific job at bringing many people together for prayer and fraternity.
750 people prayed the Sacrifice of the Mass celebrated by the Most Reverend Peter Anthony Rosazza and 17 priests. Three of the priests present tonight were representing the Archbishop-Prelate of Pompeii Carlo Liberati. The faithful heard a letter sent to them by Archbishop Liberati and from the Pope via the Cardinal Secretary of State, Tarcisio Bertone, SDB. Bishop Peter did some parts of the Mass in Italian and others in English; he sang the propers of the Mass and the Eucharistic prayer.

Clergy OLOP June 6 2011.jpg

Following the Liturgy, several people prayed the Rosary, including members of the Third Order Dominicans. Because of a realization that the Rosary is gospel lived, it is known to cut off the head of evil. The Rosary connects us not only with God by way of meditating on His great of act of Love, but also the spiritual home of the Basilica of Our Lady of Pompeii with Pompeii, East Haven, CT.
The feast of Our Lady of the Rosary of Pompeii is traditionally observed on May 8. This feast of the Blessed Mother is recalled as result of the good work of Blessed Bartolo Longo (a man who gave his life to Christ –after a life of following spiritism and satanism. He became a Third Order Dominican and a member of the Order of Holy Sepulchre, an Apostle of the Rosary. Longo is also known for his famous Supplica, a prayer which sets one’s heart on truth and reality of the Incarnate Word of God. Blessed Bartolo might be seen as Italy’s equivalent of Saint Faustina. Longo’s mission, which ought to be ours, “is to write about Mary, to Mary praised, to have Mary loved.”

Our Lady of Pompeii Church East Haven June 6 2011.jpg

There’s at least 8 churches in the USA named in honor of Our Lady of Pompeii: East Haven, CT, Chicago, IL, Tickfaw, LA, Baltimore, MD, Paterson, NJ, Vineland, NJ. New York, NY and Dobbs Ferry, NY.

May, the month of the Blessed Virgin Mary

faithful at the Lourdes grotto.jpgHail Mary, poor and humble Woman,
Blessed by the Most High!
Virgin of hope, dawn of a new era,
We join in your song of praise,
to celebrate the Lord’s mercy,
to proclaim the coming of the Kingdom
and the full liberation of humanity.

 

Hail Mary, lowly handmaid of the Lord,

Glorious Mother of Christ!

Faithful Virgin, holy dwelling-place of the Word,

Teach us to persevere in listening to the Word,

and to be docile to the voice of the Spirit,

attentive to his promptings in the depths of our conscience

and to his manifestations in the events of history.

 

Hail Mary, Woman of sorrows,

Mother of the living!

Virgin spouse beneath the Cross, the new Eve,

Be our guide along the paths of the world.

Teach us to experience and to spread the love of Christ,

to stand with you before the innumerable crosses

on which your Son is still crucified.

 

Hail Mary, woman of faith,

First of the disciples!

Virgin Mother of the Church, help us always

to account for the hope that is in us,

with trust in human goodness and the Father’s love.

Teach us to build up the world beginning from within:

in the depths of silence and prayer,
in the joy of fraternal love,

in the unique fruitfulness of the Cross.


Holy Mary, Mother of believers, pray for us. Amen.

a prayer written to Mary, the Mother of God by Blessed John Paul II, Lourdes, 2004

About the author

Paul A. Zalonski is from New Haven, CT. He is a member of the Fraternity of Communion and Liberation, a Catholic ecclesial movement, and an Oblate of Saint Benedict. Contact Paul at paulzalonski[at]yahoo.com.
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